Pension Review Magazine
The hardest phenomenon to predict is the future, especially if you’re still struggling to figure out what’s happening in today’s economy. But predicting the future is exactly what you need to do if you’re enrolling in school, starting a fresh career, or investing in new skills.
The attribute of most successful entrepreneurs is that they don’t follow the herd but anticipate the needs of the market earlier than the competition.
Of course, such anticipation is not without risk, but the result is often great.
It is good to note that inventions like the automobile, Internet and smartphone were all regarded with high degrees of scepticism when first introduced, the business site, profitable ventures reported.
The automobile gave rise to a global network of small businesses, such as parts makers, dealerships, and service centres. The Internet has spawned a host of online companies, many of which, such as Amazon.com and eBay.com, have grown from small operations to very large ones.
So what are the small businesses of the future?
The era of big data is just getting started, with many firms eager to tap vast new databases to gather more info on their customers, their competitors, and even themselves. The challenge isn’t just crunching numbers; it’s making sense of them, and gaining useful insights that can be translated into a business edge.
Marketing and market research are two growing fields where the use of data is exploding. With the right gadgets and know-how, you can position yourself for this time bomb business. Examples of firms making it big in the data world in Nigeria are Story Lab Academy and BudgIT
You may wonder why this is being mentioned. But water is becoming scarce, researches reveal. It has been said that water is the oil of the 21st century. But humans don’t need to drink a litre or two of oil every day. Even in the southern side of Nigeria where there is much water, pollution and pollutants has hindered such sources from being potable.
You can drink the water or let plants drink it; hence one can still sink some investments into bottling water, irrigation water among others and still earn a living in Nigeria in many locations. Making and selling sachet water remains a good business in Abuja and its environs and it can be expanded to include supplies of bottled water, fruit juice, and large quantum of water for domestic and industrial uses.
This is because many areas still lack access to public pipe-borne water around neighbouring Nasarawa and Niger states and many places within the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
Mobile Marketing and Brand Consulting
Due to the ever-increasing number of people who surf the web using mobile devices like smartphones and tablets, businesses are now realizing the need to adopt mobile marketing as a way of targeting prospects that use mobile devices.
This has led to an increase in the demand for mobile marketing consultants. Since indicators are suggesting that mobile devices will continue to dominate for a long time, there’s a huge opportunity for mobile marketing consultants.
You can tune up for this as social media marketing expert while helping other start-up firms promote and grow their brands. A few months’ training at the professionals’ place can make you virtual force to reckon with this year.
Car Sharing Business
The Car Sharing Business (CBS) may not be a popular one in Nigeria yet, but it is something to look out for in the future especially across metropolis characterised by long hours of traffic jams and rising fuel price.
The concept is already trending in the United States where it is called Car Sharing and in the United Kingdom where they know it as Car Clubs (CC). It is a model of car rental where people rent cars for short periods of time, often by the hour. There is the growing trend of Car Hire (CH) as it is known in Nigeria mostly around hotels and airports. But the angle of sharing vehicles at congested areas is yet to be popular as it is in China and elsewhere. For instance, the Taxify platform began in Abuja in November after existing for some times in Lagos.
The Industrial Training Fund (ITF) has said 70,000 Nigerians were trained on various entrepreneurial skills in the last one year to reduce existing skills gap in the nation’s industrial sector.
The Director-General of the Fund, Sir Joseph Ari, who stated this when he received some stakeholders of the Fund, explained that about 90 per cent of the beneficiaries were either currently successful entrepreneurs, or earning livelihoods as paid employees according to the monitoring and evaluation of graduates conducted by the ITF.
He said equipping Nigerians with relevant skills was not only in line with the Federal Government’s efforts to create jobs but would stem the current wave of migration by the youth to Europe.
He wondered why there is mass migration despite several surveys that prove existing skills gaps being filled by foreigners in Nigeria.
Ari explained that the federal government has initiated programmes to bridge the gaps, including the National Industrial Skills Development Programme (NISDP), Passion to Profession, Training on Wheels Using Mobile Training Units, the Women Skills Empowerment Programme (WOSEP), the Technical Skills Development Project (TSDP) as well as the Vulnerable and Indigent Youth Empowerment Programme (VIYEP) amongst several others.
He said through the NISDP over 100,000 persons have been trained. The programme continues across the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) with 11,100 trainees learning skills in welding and fabrication, tailoring and garment making, and plumbing and pipe fitting.
The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has described the outgone year, 2017, as a tough one for Nigerian workers and pensioners as it was characterised by unpaid salaries and pensions.
NLC President Ayuba Wabba stated this yesterday in his New Year message to Nigerian workers.
Wabba, however congratulated Nigerian workers and pensioners for their resilience which saw them pull through 2017 which, according to him, was one of the most difficult years for most Nigerians in recent history.
The NLC president noted that the poor economic situation in 2017 was aptly captured by the statistics recently released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) which indicated that over four million Nigerians lost their jobs in 2017, contrary to the campaign promise of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) government to create three million jobs annually.
Wabba said the statistics from the NBS underscored the grave and depressing situation of the Nigerian economic landscape in 2017.
“Rather than work to create jobs and improve the condition of Nigerian working people and Nigerians in general, leading elements in the ruling APC government, like Governor Nasir el-Rufai, have been taking measures to further chastise and ruin Nigerians by throwing tens of thousands of workers into the already saturated unemployment market and wretchedness,”
He also blamed the state governments for misusing the huge revenue received through the Federal Government intervention funds to clear arrears of unpaid salaries and pensions in many states of the federation, coupled with additional payment of three tranches of windfall (Paris Club debt refunds).
Specifically, Wabba mentioned Kogi, Osun, Benue, Ekiti and Bayelsa states among others as states that entered 2018 with huge arrears spanning up to 10 or more months of wages and pensions.
On local government autonomy, he commended the recent passage of three core bills on Local Government autonomy in the country by the National Assembly, saying the passage of the constitutional amendment to guarantee local government autonomy will promote good governance and deepen democratic culture at the grassroots
Foreign Affairs Minister Geoffrey Onyeama has canvased for a better pension system to enable retirees to live comfortably after exiting civil service.
Onyeama, while addressing staff members and diplomats that retired in the ministry in 2017, stressed the need to make retirement and pension attractive so that retirees could really look forward to it as obtainable in other parts of the world
He recalled his 30-year working experience in an international system, where a lot of people usually planned for early retirement.
“They wanted to still be young to engage with their families again and give them the attention they deserve.
“So they always look forward to retirement as a wonderful opportunity to live instead of existing and working. But I suppose this works well where we have systems that have better pension system that really make it possible for retirees to live comfortably after their working years,” he said.
The minister, however, charged the retirees to explore the numerous opportunities in retirement.
Ambassador Naomi Chukwumaeze, who spoke on behalf of the retirees, expressed concern over a system that makes civil servants to retire before the age of 60.
Chukwumaeze said it is an “anomaly” for a worker to retire at the age of 55 or below because such had worked for 35 years.
She therefore urged government to review the system to accommodate workers who have served for 35 years but were yet to attain 60 years.
Mr Abdullahi Sani-Oseze, the Director-General, Nasarawa State Pension Bureau, has said that the State Government, had increased the minimum pension of retirees to N5, 000.
Sani-Oseze made this disclosure in Lafia on Saturday in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).
He said that the government made the adjustment in order to make life more meaningful for pensioners, in view of the prevailing economic realities in the country.
The Director-General said some workers, who retired from active service before the implementation of minimum wage in the state, were receiving as low as N1, 000 as their monthly pension.
“So we consider the plight of this category of pensioners and reported to Governor Umaru Al-Makura, who directed that there should be an upward review of their pensions.
“No pensioner today in the state receives less than N5, 000 as his monthly pension,” he added.
Sani-Oseze said that the bureau had taken measures to address issues of some pensioners, who had not benefited from any payment since the inception of Al-Makura’s administration in 2011.
“We have given them one week to come forward with their documents and the response has been impressive.
“Those who were unable to come as at December 22 can still bring their documents after Christmas; we will still attend to them,” the Director-General said.
The mandate Secretary of Area Council Services Secretariat, Malam Adamu Abubakar Bappah, has said the secretariat will do everything possible to ensure the payment of area councils’ staff pension.
Bappah stated this when the executive of the FCT branch of the Nigeria Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE), led by its president, Comrade Alhassan Abubakar, paid him a courtesy call in his office last Thursday.
He said his administration would ensure there was synergy between his office and the service commission to ensure that the challenges facing NULGE, especially area council staff welfare was given priority.
He said a monitoring committee would be put in place across the six area councils to ensure that all payments were made to designated area councils.